Alabama Nightlife: A Guide To The Best Places To Visit
Alabama is known as the “Heart of Dixie”—and it’s a heart that beats all the harder when night falls over the state. The nightlife scene in Alabama is vibrant, diverse and as hot as the climate. Seven of the best spots to visit once the sun goes down are listed below.
The Rattlesnake Saloon, Tuscumbia
This iconic slice of Alabama nightlife opens its doors Thursday to Saturday from 11 a.m. until 10 p.m. and on Sunday until 3 p.m. Live music and other evening entertainment can be enjoyed at the Rattlesnake Saloon, and the menu features choices such as Chuckwagon Nachos, Smoke Trail Dog and the $60 Gigantor. If a brave diner can finish this mountain of meat, fries, onion rings and fixins’ within 45 minutes, it’s on the house! The bar serves a range of soft drinks, as well as wine and a selection of beers and ciders.
The Rattlesnake Saloon is rated as being one of the area’s most popular attractions. Built into the side of a vast sheet of rock and offering indoor and outdoor restaurant tables, it comes alive in the evening as bands play and visitors enjoy the unique ambiance of this venue.
The Collins Bar, Birmingham
The Collins Bar opens from 4 p.m. to midnight every day and takes its selection of drinks seriously. The servers here encourage guests to tell them the type of flavors they like in order to whip up a bespoke cocktail to fit every possible taste and mood. As well as the standard beers, The Collins Bar has an impressive range of craft and imported ales, plus seasonal options that change throughout the year.
The kitchen is open Wednesday to Saturday, and diners can enjoy sharing platters or items from the grill like chili dogs, patty melts and turkey wraps; bar snacks are available every day.
Pints and Pixels, Huntsville
Pints and Pixels makes for a unique night out that fuses a bar and vintage arcade experience. This venue is well known for its selection of beer, having more than 40 craft ales on tap, as well as a selection of wine and soft drinks —there’s a traditional soda fountain, too!
Visitors can enjoy their drinks while playing old-school favorites like Skee Ball or trying their hand at the various pinball machines. This venue is now also taking bookings for private events.
The Stardome, Birmingham
The Stardome is a comedy club that has been running since 1983, with an ever-changing lineup of performers and events throughout the year. Guests can make the most of their evening by enjoying a cocktail, glass of wine or beer while watching the show and can choose from a menu that includes quesadillas, grilled chicken sandwiches and Philly cheesesteak.
As well as their signature shows, The Stardome has the space to host private events and banquets and offers a Comedy School for those wishing to hone their funny skills. Guests should note that visitors to this venue need to be aged 17 and over.
Pink Pony Pub, Gulf Shores
This iconic beachfront restaurant and bar is open every day from 11 a.m. until 10 p.m. and welcomes children until 9 p.m. The Pink Pony has been open since the 1950s and can be spotted at a distance thanks to its vibrant pink exterior.
Guests are welcome to enjoy the pub’s air-conditioned interior or may prefer to lounge on the outside wooden deck to watch the waves roll in while sampling an Iceberg Martini, a Louisiana Hayride or an Amaretto Orange Blossom. Outdoor picnic-style tables are shaded under large beach umbrellas, and the menu features appetizers, salads, soups and pub fare like New Orleans Barbeque Shrimp and a Golden Fried Chicken Basket.
The nighttime vibe at the Pink Pony is relaxed and mellow: diners are encouraged to take their time over their food and drinks and to soak up the laid-back atmosphere of this legendary beachside venue.
Gip’s Place, Birmingham
Gip’s Place is one of the last remaining juke joints, which typically refers to a bar with music, often played on a jukebox and an indoor area for dancing. At this venue, guests need to bring their own drinks, make a cash contribution toward the band and the running of the place and then sit back and enjoy the live music—or get up and dance to it.
The music is predominantly blues-based and, before he passed away, Mr. Gip himself hosted Muddy Waters and John Lee Hooker at his place since the 1950s. Note: Gip’s Place has been closed but is expected to reopen. Call 205-919-8142 for hours.
The Atomic Lounge, Birmingham
Rated as one of the best bars in the area, the Atomic Lounge is a vibrant, eclectic venue that specializes in craft cocktails and relaxed drinking—their beverages are so popular that fans can buy a book on how to make them, available on the lounge’s website.
Guests consistently rate the superior service, fun retro look and quirky little touches, like the provision of board games on every table in the bar. The cocktails are also regularly named as being a highlight of the Atomic experience … as is the bubble machine and the availability of animal costumes to borrow and wear for the duration of your visit.